The judges loved 274 Bragg’s “insertion of a contemporary kitchen into the context of an old structure,” and they rewarded the project with a Grand Award. Especially impressive to the jury was how compatibly this modern kitchen gets along with its 1920s warehouse shell. The building’s original metal-stamped ceiling tiles were removed, restored, and rehung, with plaster replicas made to restore missing pieces. To light the kitchen, off-the-shelf floor lamps were reworked and hung from the attic, eliminating the need for junction boxes within the restored ceiling.

The galley layout opens the kitchen to the rest of the living area while defining it as a high-functioning place for cooking. A prep island spans the width, drawing the boundary between it and the living and dining area. The island features a full-size sink (rather than the smaller-sized basin often found on islands) and dishwasher, plus storage and space for eating on the living-room side. This is a fine example of the kitchen as hub: equal parts hard-working and homey.

Learn more about markets featured in this article: Birmingham, AL.